/ Best Cycle Facility of the Month yet
I don't know whether to laugh or cry
What's wrong? It stops those pesky cyclists from wobbling all over the road.
I generally avoid cycle lanes for all of the reasons illustrated in CFOTM. Got caught out last night though as I went out for a ride to and over the Severn bridge, for which I know I need to use a cycle lane - fair enough. You sort of join it by default, as half the road you're on becomes a cycle lane. So far so good. Cracking on happily until you get to the roundabout, where it steers you off the road and then straight back across at 90 degreess to the traffic that was behind you.
What's wrong with sticking your arm out, moving across the single lane of traffic and exiting to the right onto the traffic island?
That'll teach me to use cycle lanes.
There is a slight benefit to putting cycle lanes alongside tramlines, which is that you're less likely to get dozy f*ckers parking in the cycle lane if they think they might get wiped out by a tram.
Actually, the CFOTM sort of stuff isn't the main reason for me to avoid cycle lanes. This sort of stuff may be symptomatic of the same root cause (ie a box-ticking "that'll do" culture and a tendency to view cycle lanes as a nice bonus if you can fit them in but not worth messing around with "proper" traffic for), but the thing that really puts me off is the fact that cycle lanes tend to be badly surfaced, narrow, and often shared with pedestrians, and consequently slow and/or nerve-wracking.
The other major usability issues (for me) are cycle routes that are conceived for getting you from point A to point B without any thought about how you might get on or off if you want to get to go to point C halfway in between, and cycle routes that require you to do something counterintuitive at exactly the right point or you'll miss the start and be stuck on the main road looking longingly at the cycle lane you want to be on but can't get to.
Indeed, the tram drivers in Sheffield get rather annoyed with people who think they can park on the tracks because they were "only going to be a minute". They start off ringing the bell then if that doesn't work they resort to the massively noisy train horn. I once saw a tram pushing a car that had been abandoned due to snow.
Round here, that doesn't only apply to cycle lanes - the roads are just as bad :-( Cyclists aren't being singled out for the sh1tty end of that particular stick.
I believe the recommended width is 1m, which is basically useless.
In my neighbourhood roadside cycle lanes (AKA "the gutter") are usually shared with parked cars and white vans - most of which are also positioned so as to "share" a proportion of the footway. The fact that it's perfectly legal to park in these cycle lanes makes them utterly pointless.
It really is way past time that the authorities admitted that roadside cycle lanes are a pointless waste of money, and shouldn't count towards cycling provision quotas at any level.
Love the commentary on this one: http://homepage.ntlworld.com/pete.meg/wcc/facility-of-the-month/August2012.htm
This short cycle path in Hounslow has been installed by Transport for London to enable cyclists who have been roosting overnight in the branches of this tree to ride smoothly onto Boston Manor Road.
I am very fortunate to live close to this one and have used it on many occasions; http://homepage.ntlworld.com/pete.meg/wcc/facility-of-the-month/August2009.htm
I wonder if CCFOTM is having a negative effect in that road planners are fighting each other to see if they can come up with another entry, a bit like bullsh*t bingo :-)
Its poor in comparison to the ones on CCFOTM but I was amused by the local leisure centre turning a cyclepath into a pay booth for a pay and display car park.
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